The Right Time To Have The Talk

Name: Janine | Email: | Location: new york , new york |Question:
The man I've been dating for a couple months told me last night that he
was not ready to be exclusive. The conversation was preceded by dinner
and a few glasses of wine so when he told me this later I naturally
became emotional. I asked him if he was sleeping with anyone else and
he said that there was someone earlier in our relationship but that
that relationship was over. I don't know what to do. I feel so hurt. I
never should have brought the subject up. The worst part about this was
that we had this conversation after we had sex, while we were still in
bed. When he told me this news I got up and dressed and left. Now I
don't know if I should call him and apologize or just leave him alone
and wait for him to call me. I really like him and thought we were on
our way to being exclusive but now I don't know.  |Age: 32

Well,
where ever you were headed last night has most definitely been put on
hold in his mind.  Not just because you got emotional. Because you
left. He's going to wonder if this is how you always handle conflict.
Nobody likes to be or feel abandoned. So keep that in mind the next
time a rather sticky or confusing situation arises. Stick it out. Don't
make a grand exit thinking in the back of your mind that he'll call you
the next day or later to make up or check in on you. You'll be setting
yourself up for a major disappointment. Given that this guy admitted to
be sleeping with someone else while dating you, his investment level
appears to be low to average at this point.

However...that
doesn't necessarily mean that he's not interested in you or interested
in a future relationship. He's just being a guy. When they're put in a
corner and asked outright where things are going, they will almost
always balk at the suggestion of exclusivity. They will throw out the
"not sure" line or say they really enjoy hanging out and but not sure
what they want, etc. It's not that they don't want to be exclusive.
It's that they feel they are being manipulated into it that causes them
to shut down.

Post-sex is never a good time to have any kind of
serious discussion. He's mentally and physically exhausted, almost
incapable of forming a thought or sentence, and you're feeling all
vulnerable and emotional. Seriously, the male orgasm and female orgasm
trigger very different responses. Add alcohol to that and you have a
combustive mix. The time for those conversations is when you're alone,
clothed and not tipsy. If you're the one bringing it up, then all you
can do is state what your intentions are and ask if he thinks
eventually those expectations can or will be met. You need to make it
clear you're not issuing an ultimatum or forcing him to make a decision
on the spot. All you can and should do is be clear about what you're
looking for, show understanding to how uncomfortable this conversation
probably is for him, then drop it. He'll respect you for looking out
for yourself. He may not give you the answer you want right then, but
that doesn't mean he won't. He just needs to come around to it on his
terms. You need to decide what's right for you and what your terms are
and set your boundaries/limitations.

The other thing to remember
is that exclusivity should NEVER be assumed. Ever. You're not exclusive
until you two both verbally state you're exclusive. Men will hide
behind that little caveat for as long as they can. Not because they
want to have as much sex with as many different women as possible, but
because they want to believe they have that option.

Finally,
never, ever , ever ask a man/woman if they're sleeping with someone
else or how many partners they've had. That is never perceived as
anything other than insecurity. If you're interested in their sexual
history for health purposes, then ask when the last time was that they
were tested and if they tested clean. What people have done in their
past or before they have committed themselves to you is none of your
business.

Give the guy a few days. If he calls, then great, he's
interested enough to try to get things back on track. If a few days go
by and he doesn't call, then call him. You'll be able to tell by his
voice where he stands. But let him suggest that you two meet up. Don't
ask him when you can get together. If he wants to see you again, don't
worry, he'll ask. If he doesn't, then he's moved on.

 

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